What Are You Currently Reading?
Post Reply
 
Thread Rating:
  • 2 Votes - 5 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
04-01-2013, 12:31 PM
RE: What Are You Currently Reading?
Ha - I just finished "Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!": Adventures of a Curious Character. It's a collection of reminiscences by the Nobel Prize-winning physicist, Richard Feynman. A guy I'd love to have known.
[Image: SurelyYoureJokingMrFeynman.PNG]
The book's a hoot and so was he.

I think in the end, I just feel like I'm a secular person who has a skeptical eye toward any extraordinary claim, carefully examining any extraordinary evidence before jumping to conclusions. ~ Eric ~ My friend ... who figured it out.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 2 users Like kim's post
04-01-2013, 12:56 PM
RE: What Are You Currently Reading?
Currently reading:

Sense and Goodness Without God: A Defense of Metaphysical Naturalism by Richard Carrier

The Believing Brain by Michael Shermer

God is Not Great by Christopher Hitchens (I've already listened to the audiobook several times, but I wanted to read it as well.)

The Portable Atheist by Christopher Hitchens

An Atheists Critique of the Bible by Brian Shuty aka Buddy Christ

Contribute to the Community Resource!
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes Near's post
07-01-2013, 10:20 PM
RE: What Are You Currently Reading?
Teaching Sign Language to Chimpanzees (1989) edited by R. Allen Gardner, Beatrix T. Gardner, and Thomas E. Van Cantfort

I became interested in the subject after reading this book. It was just so fascinating to learn about the inner thoughts of our ape cousins. For example, Washoe, the first chimp to learn signing, was raised as a human child for the first 5 years of her life. She wore clothes, played with dolls, ate at the dinner table with utensils, and slept in a bed at night. However, after the Gardners were done with their research, Washoe was sent to live in a chimp colony in another state. When she was first introduced to the others, her caregiver Roger Fouts asked her in sign "WHAT THAT?" She replied, "BLACK BUGS." She had never met another chimp in her life, so she gave the unfamiliar creatures a name, the name of her most dreaded fear, bugs. What was odd about this is that she could recognize herself in a mirror. Therefore, she should have been able to understand that she was like the other chimps (experiments showed that she was able to place like items under generalized terms, such as calling a rose and a daisy "FLOWERS," for example). However, she viewed herself as a human because she was raised that way.

The above book is a collection of papers on the Gardners' research. I bought it because I wanted to learn more about the experiments themselves. Plus, it provides a rebuttal to a similar experiment, Project Nim, performed a decade or so after theirs which wrongly cast such chimp language experiments into question.
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes ghostexorcist's post
07-01-2013, 11:08 PM
RE: What Are You Currently Reading?
Some Mistakes of Moses - Robert Green Ingersoll

A History of God - Karen Armstrong

The Christian Delusion - John W. Loftus & more

[Image: GrumpyCat_01.gif]
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes EvolutionKills's post
08-01-2013, 12:53 AM
RE: What Are You Currently Reading?
(07-01-2013 10:20 PM)ghostexorcist Wrote:  The above book is a collection of papers on the Gardners' research. I bought it because I wanted to learn more about the experiments themselves. Plus, it provides a rebuttal to a similar experiment, Project Nim, performed a decade or so after theirs which wrongly cast such chimp language experiments into question.

GhostE - what are your thoughts on raising chimps so close with humans and then returning them to nature? Especially after the Nim project was just so heartbreaking - I don't see how it's a good idea to put them into the wild. It's like they are half way between worlds. At least in a habitat they would be protected. I think we have a lot to learn. Undecided

I think in the end, I just feel like I'm a secular person who has a skeptical eye toward any extraordinary claim, carefully examining any extraordinary evidence before jumping to conclusions. ~ Eric ~ My friend ... who figured it out.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
08-01-2013, 08:08 AM (This post was last modified: 08-01-2013 08:18 AM by ghostexorcist.)
RE: What Are You Currently Reading?
(08-01-2013 12:53 AM)kim Wrote:  GhostE - what are your thoughts on raising chimps so close with humans and then returning them to nature? Especially after the Nim project was just so heartbreaking - I don't see how it's a good idea to put them into the wild. It's like they are half way between worlds. At least in a habitat they would be protected. I think we have a lot to learn. Undecided

I am not a big fan of it at all; I think it is a huge injustice to the chimps. They are all cute when they are kids, but they eventually turn into unpredictable, territorial adults. It's not their fault, it's just their nature. This is why so many people get rid of their chimps. Most zoos won't take them because they didn't learn the requisite face, hand, and body gestures, or the social ranking system, when they were younger. So they are neither a chimp or a human, but something in between.

Washoe had an extremely hard time adjusting to living in the chimp colony. Her caregiver Roger knew she would never survive, so he talked the owner, a recognized psychologist with sociopathic tendencies who liked to shoot the chimps with pellet guns and tase them with cattle prods, into letting him place any signing chimps who came to the facility on a small island in the middle of the property. All who came to the island eventually adjusted and became their own family with Washoe as the matriarch. Roger Fouts, who eventually got his PhD, was able to take the signing chimps with him when he got hired at a university in Washington State. He eventually raised enough money to build them a large facility. Thus, these apes had a happy ending. Although, Fouts is adamant that apes should never be raised as humans in the first place, not to mention that such individuals should never be returned to the wild.

The best example I can give as to why human-reared chimps should never be returned to the wild is Lucy Temerlin. She was given to a female psychotherapist and professor to raise by the aforementioned psychologist, her former mentor. Lucy thrived in the human environment, even taking to drinking liquor while watching TV or flipping through magazines. She even took to pleasuring herself while looking at the nude male figures in Playgirl. But she eventually had to be transferred to a reserve in Africa when she became too unpredictable at the age of 12. She was left in the care of a psychology grad student who tried to make the transition into a wild community smoother. However, Lucy would sign that she was "HURT" because she was so sad about the situation. They later found her remains in the forest, apparently the result of poaching. Some people doubt she died that way, though. Even if she wasn't killed that way, I'm sure it wasn't a happy ending. After all, she was only 23 years old when she died. Here is the last known photo of Lucy hugging the grad student before her death:

[Image: Lucy_and_Janis_hugging.png]

To get the thread back on track, I also recently purchased the following book:

Infant Chimpanzee and Human Child (1935) by N.N. Ladygina-Kohts

This often cited long-term experiment was the first to ever compare the cognitive development of human and chimpanzee children. It was originally written in Russian. This edition is the first full English translation prepared in 2002.
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 2 users Like ghostexorcist's post
08-01-2013, 08:13 AM
RE: What Are You Currently Reading?
(08-01-2013 08:08 AM)ghostexorcist Wrote:  I am not a big fan of it at all; I think it is a huge injustice to the chimps. They are all cute when they are kids, but they eventually turn into unpredictable, territorial adults. It's not their fault, it's just their nature. This is why so many people get rid of their chimps. Most zoos won't take them because they didn't learn the requisite face, hand, and body gestures, or the social ranking system, when they were younger. So they are neither a chimp or a human, but something in between.

Washoe had an extremely hard time adjusting to living in the chimp colony. Her caregiver Roger new she would never survive, so he talked the owner, a recognized psychologist with sociopathic tendencies who liked to shoot the chimps with pellet guns and tase them with cattle prods, into letting him place any signing chimps who came to the facility on a small island in the middle of the property. All who came to the island eventually adjusted and became their own family with Washoe as the matriarch. Roger Fouts, who eventually got his PhD, was able to take the signing chimps with him when he got hired at a university in Washington State. He eventually raised enough money to build them a large facility. Thus, these apes had a happy ending. Although, Fouts is adamant that apes should never be raised as humans in the first place, not to mention that such individuals should never be returned to the wild.

The best example I can give as to why human-reared chimps should never be returned to the wild is Lucy Temerlin. She was given to a female psychotherapist and professor to raise by the aforementioned psychologist, her former mentor. Lucy thrived in the human environment, even taking to drinking liquor while watching TV or flipping through magazines. She even took to pleasuring herself while looking at the nude male figures in Playgirl. But she eventually had to be transferred to a reserve in Africa when she became too unpredictable at the age of 12. She was left in the care of a psychology grad student who tried to make the transition into a wild community smoother. However, Lucy would sign that was "HURT" because she was so sad about the situation. They later found her remains in the forest, apparently the result of poaching. Some people doubt she died that way, though. Even if she wasn't killed that way, I'm sure it wasn't a happy ending. After all, she was only 23 years old when she died. Here is the last known photo of Lucy hugging the grad student before her death:

[Image: Lucy_and_Janis_hugging.png]

To get the thread back on track, I also recently purchased the following book:

Infant Chimpanzee and Human Child (1935) by N.N. Ladygina-Kohts

This often cited long-term experiment was the first to ever compare the cognitive development of human and chimpanzee children. It was originally written in Russian. This edition is the first full English translation prepared in 2002.
We can be so cruel in our arrogance.

This picture is heartbreaking.

"E se non passa la tristezza con altri occhi la guarderĂ²."
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
08-01-2013, 08:21 AM
RE: What Are You Currently Reading?
(08-01-2013 08:13 AM)Vera Wrote:  We can be so cruel in our arrogance.

This picture is heartbreaking.

I agree. I always get a little choked up when ever I see the picture.
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes ghostexorcist's post
08-01-2013, 08:29 AM
RE: What Are You Currently Reading?
(08-01-2013 08:21 AM)ghostexorcist Wrote:  I agree. I always get a little choked up when ever I see the picture.
Well, I did, too (before I scolded myself) and I don't even know the story as well as you do. Sadcryface

Speaking of books and animals, I always cry at the end of William Wharton's Pride, when the lion... well, anyway...

Jeez, all that talk about crying, that's not me. I blame all those Les Miserables fans Angry

"E se non passa la tristezza con altri occhi la guarderĂ²."
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 2 users Like Vera's post
11-01-2013, 02:41 PM
RE: What Are You Currently Reading?
I just finished "A Brief History of Time" by Stephen Hawking and I'm starting on "The Demon Haunted World" by Carl Sagan. Of course I waited until I was actually reading that to come onto this thread.

Unfortunately too many answers here look just like mine. How many people are honest enough to come on this thread when they're reading the latest book by Snooki? Or when they're reading porn?
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 2 users Like FlyingPizzaMonster's post
Post Reply

Possibly Related Threads...
Thread: Author Replies: Views: Last Post
  Please Donate To Reading Rainbow Kickstarter, Only 9 Days Left! WindyCityJazz 0 58 22-06-2014 06:39 PM
Last Post: WindyCityJazz
  Re-reading books BrokenQuill92 10 325 06-02-2014 12:31 AM
Last Post: Astreja
  Suggested Reading Material Julie15 12 616 08-03-2013 01:25 PM
Last Post: RaisdCath
  Would you be interested in reading the Christian Bible... PoolBoyG 37 1,617 04-11-2012 08:51 PM
Last Post: Logisch
  Started reading Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter kingschosen 2 442 16-04-2012 07:00 PM
Last Post: Logica Humano
  Reading list in the making... suggestions, anyone? wellspringofderision 15 1,397 05-04-2012 09:28 PM
Last Post: Bucky Ball
Forum Jump: